Re "State should make dental care a priority," (Editorials, Aug. 8): The Bee's view that the board of Covered California request new bids for plans that include "embedded" dental care for children is directly on point. Including these plans in Covered California's 2014 open enrollment period would be in keeping with the California Legislature's decision that pediatric dental care is one of the 10 required "essential health benefits" to be provided under health care reform.
Last year, I voted for and the Legislature approved AB 1453 and SB 961, which adopted benchmark standards for these essential health benefits, and affirmed that the Healthy Families dental plan program was best for children.
A failure to include embedded dental health care for children would be inconsistent with the clear intent of the Legislature, and I'm pleased to be among the chorus of families and advocates who are asking the exchange to reconsider the path they are on.
- Roger Dickinson, Assembly member, 7th District